A bee by any other name....

Photo by Valengilda/iStock / Getty Images
Photo by Valengilda/iStock / Getty Images

You might be wondering where the name, Bee's Knees Consulting came from.

Well, I wanted a name that would:

  • stand out*
  • grow with me and my business
  • inspire a little joy
  • convey values that matter to me and my company

What are those values? They include:

  • Excellence, becoming the best
  • Adaptability
  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Servant Leadership

Bees and beehives display many behaviors related to these values, and they demonstrate that small steps and adaptations can yield big gains. Here are a few short articles about this. Who knew I was biomimicking?

Leadership Lessons from a Beehive

6 Lessons that Businesses Can Learn from Bees

What Workplaces Need to Learn from Bees

Thanks to a recommendation from some City Year pals, I was also digging the podcast StartUp, around the time I was starting my business, particularly this episode on naming a company. It gave me some ideas, some good laughs, and a sense of freedom to choose something unique.

My maternal grandmother was another inspiration--she used phrases like "bee's knees" and "the cat's meow," popular in her youth. In my work, I use some tried and true, traditional program evaluation approaches, combined with new twists. "Bee's knees" evokes that tradition while it remains current (just check out some drink menus these days). And, as a bonus, the black and gold colors of bees reflect my Pittsburgh roots.



*I noticed that a lot of evaluation consultants name their firms after themselves. There is nothing wrong with that, but my name is a mouthful and I wanted my company to be more than just about me and my name. My last name is pronounced Bee-secker (or bee-sucker, if you were a certain boy in my elementary school), so Bee's Knees is a play on that too. Others seem to pick names that are descriptive of where they are (e.g., Boston) or what they do (e.g., Research).